The Controller and Accountant General’s Department has reacted to the news making waves on social media that the Department has woefully deducted about GHC 1,000 from teachers’ November salary when the validation window was opened.
Many teachers were swift to point fingers at the Controller for deducting the said amount of money, forgetting that the Department cannot effect any deductions unless the employee has mandated them through a third party and in this case, the employer (GES) and the various teacher unions.
Well, since the Ghana Education Service and the three major teacher unions are quiet ever since the news broke, the impression created is that they are fully aware of the deduction even before teachers got to know.
The Controller has come out bold and clear in a circular signed by the Acting Controller, Kwasi Kwaning-Bosompem that before deducting the monies meant for teachers laptop and NTC license fee, the Ghana Education Service wrote to them instructing the Department to deduct the said amount.
The circular also revealed that the teacher unions i.e. GNAT, NAGRAT and CCT-GH fully approved of the deduction before its implementation. “These deductions per the letter we received were as a result of the agreements between the Ghana Education Service and the Teacher Unions.” It stated.
Furthermore, the Department articulated that it will not solely deduct teachers salaries without the necessary authorization from those concerned.
It is a shame for the three main teacher unions regarding the One Teacher One Laptop Project because none of them has been fair to their members regarding the price and quality of the laptops.
It has emerged that the manufacturer of the laptop is not a registered business operating in the country. This was after search through the database of the Registrar showed no results.
As if that was not enough, the Ghana Standards Authority has also come out to say that the laptops have not gone through the necessary examination to check its quality.
One would ask what exact role did the teacher unions play in the facilitation of this project, although the motive to purchase laptops for teachers is a laudable project. However, if care it not taken, it will be a failed initiative just like the Better Ghana laptops. If there is any person or body to blame, it should be the teacher unions and the Ghana Education Service.